Mixing the Malt. Gustave Doré (1832-83). 1872. Illustration for Douglas Jerrold's London, facing p. 130. Click on image to enlarge it.

A journey through the town of Malt and Hops is heavy work. The departments are many, and are all spacious. They follow in well-considered sequence. The mashing, the boiling, the cooling, the fermenting, the cleansing, the barrel-filling, the storing, the despatching, are so many departments of the government; with a sustaining aroma holding all in one atmosphere— and which keeps the mind in an unbroken train of thought even when con- templating the stables where the famous horses are kept as daintily as in the Royal Mews. Perhaps the first startling scene in the round is the mash-tun.

Mashing is the elementary process of beer making, and the object of these strange workers with wooden-spades is to mix the malt thoroughly with the water. The result is an amber liquid, called wort—lakes of which we proceed to view, lying placidly in tanks. During its progression to perfect beer the sweet wort grows sour. On its way it is pumped up from the cool lakes into gigantic copper boilers, and boiled with great care — for here the experienced and learned brewer shows himself. [130-31]

Formatting and text by George P. Landow. [You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you link your document to this URL in a web document or cite the Victorian Web in a print one.]


Jerrold, Blanchard, and Gustave Doré. London: A Pilgrimage. London: Grant & Co., 1872.

Last modified 16 February 2014